This is a fantastic idea, and one I whole-heartedly support: the first ever Cycle Touring Festival. If you like travelling by bike (whether for a weekend or a year), then please do get involved. Go along if you can or at least help to spread the word on your social media networks…
Bicycle travel ‘“ and cycling in general ‘“ is undergoing a real renaissance in the UK (writes Tom Allen). More and more people are discovering the joys of seeing the world on two wheels. This is gratifying to see, because I know from experience that bicycle travel has the power to change lives.
We’ve reached a tipping point, now, at which an entire festival dedicated to all things cycle touring is becoming viable. So a group of volunteers have got together to make it happen. The dates are now set for the UK’s very first Cycle Touring Festival, from the 1st to the 3rd of May 2015, in the grounds of Waddow Hall in Lancashire.
Don’t make the mistake of thinking this is just for people who are planning big, transcontinental journeys. The 2015 Cycle Touring Festival has been established to share these joys with anyone who’s ever dreamed of embarking on a self-propelled adventure towards pastures new ‘“ perhaps those who haven’t even considered using a bicycle to do it.
The beauty of cycle touring is its accessibility. The simple novelty of passing through new landscapes, the satisfaction of a good meal and a sound sleep at the end of a day outdoors ‘“ the basic motions of bicycle travel are its greatest allure. As a way to experience a slice of this vast, stunning world, whether for a weekend or a year, it’s pretty much unbeatable.
With a bike and a tent you could take off for a single weekend and experience more priceless moments than almost any other pastime. You don’t need loads of time, or money, or gear, or fitness ‘“ just an adventurous spirit and a bike.
The 2015 Cycle Touring Festival aims to bring inspiration, knowledge, and a big group of like-minded people together in one of the most stunning corners of England.
To inspire you to start planning your own trip, we’ve arranged for dozens of experienced veterans to share their tales from the road as part of the weekend’s entertainment programme ‘“ which also includes plenty of food, drink and revelry, and even a few bike rides in the nearby Forest of Bowland AONB.
For those of you already planning cycling adventures, our veterans will also be sharing their knowledge in sessions covering all aspects of bicycle travel, from regional route planning to bike maintenance to gear selection and budgeting.
Because we believe in sharing stories as a way to inspire others and to get more out of our own experiences too, there will also be expert workshops on writing, photography, filmmaking and blogging from the road.
Early-bird tickets are available from today, Monday 26th January, via the Cycle Touring Festival’s official website.
These discounted tickets are priced at £65 for the full weekend, including 2 nights’ camping, dinner on Saturday night, and lunch on both days.
You’ll also have the option of adding a third night’s camping to take advantage of the long Bank Holiday weekend. And if camping isn’t your thing, preferential rates are available at the on-site B&B.
We’re releasing a limited number of tickets at this special price. Once they’re gone, they’re gone! More tickets will be released at a future date, but the price will go up.
The Cycle Touring Festival is a not-for-profit endeavour, and all the event organisers are volunteers. We all love cycle touring, and we want to share our enthusiasm with you.
I hope you’ll join us at Waddow Hall on the 1st-3rd May 2015. Bring your bike!
The Cycle Touring Festival aims to:
1) Bring together those who have undertaken, are planning or who are interested in cycle tours;
2) Encourage more people to get out there and try cycle touring for themselves;
3) Provide training and resources to help people plan their own trip;
4) Be an event where cycle tourists can get together and reminisce about cycle journeys gone by;
5) Foster a community of cycle tourists;
6) Be open to everyone, regardless of age, cycling speed or wheel size.
It is organised on a voluntary basis and all help is gratefully received.